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Messages - BrewArk

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Ingredients / Re: Mash water
« on: April 06, 2010, 08:21:25 PM »
Bass river is a salt water inlet in Beverly Ma
Could the calcium to magnesium ratio be off due to calcium chloride they use on the roads in the winter?  The chloride level is high and the report saya it's due to road deicing as well as other contaminents but that might throw a lot of extra calcium into the water.

Does your report list an average and a range?  I'd expect to see fairly large differences due to the seasonality if this were the case.

General Homebrew Discussion / Re: Cost Per Batch?
« on: April 06, 2010, 08:13:14 PM »
All grain with 55 lb sacks is the way to go (I think I pay 88 cents per pound for Best Malz and MFB Pils sacks at my LHBS).  Buying a pound of hops from hopsdirect is also going to save you a lot of money.

Everything else (yeast ranching, canning starter wort, etc) is worth it, but has less return.
+1 on the full sacks of grain if you can store/use them.

There are lots of little tricks (like brewing 10 gallons instead of 5 to save pennies on propane or growing your own hops) that aren't going to be appreciable.

I'd recommend acquiring the important equipment over time when you can find it cheap.  When you do spend money, focus on the biggest bang for the buck in quality (i.e. control fermentation temperature before buying a draft system).

If you really want to control the cost per batch - brew the cheaper beers now while you're poor.  Get good at it, then when you can afford it move up the line.

Equipment and Software / Re: How to Use a Hydrometer
« on: April 06, 2010, 07:51:58 PM »
Looks great!

The only thing I'd add (and you touched on this in the last paragraph) is that for me comparing batch to batch is what I use it for. 

I don't know about fatal.  If they are offering a wager - take it.  You'd have to bring the pH down below neutral to release any chlorine gas.  Maybe they can (pretend to) do that on TV, but you & I are safe.  Last time I checked, oxygen wouldn't be fatal by itself.  As far as the heat goes, it wouldn't be as big a deal as the frothing from the gas being evolved.  The worst thing likely to happen would be burping some of the solution into one's eyes, where they'd likely suffer some irritation.

Can I use it with Chlorine Bleach?

No! Oxiclean is a bleach alternative and works by itself. Do not mix it with bleach as they will neutralize each other and can create dangerous gases and heat. If mixed in a poorly ventilated room, breathing the fumes created by this mixture can be fatal.

General Homebrew Discussion / Brew Year's Eve
« on: April 05, 2010, 08:09:08 PM »
From the Calendar:

Brew Years Eve

April 7, 1933

The modification of the Volstead Act allows beer to be sold once again. The modification changed the allowed alcohol percentage of a beverage from .05 to 3.2 allowing beer to be served once again. Over 1.5 million barrels of beer was consumed during the first 24-hours after the modification of the Act.

April 7, 2010

Today, the America's craft brewers have reinvigorated US beer culture that had been wrecked by Prohibition. With more small breweries in America than even before Prohibition in the 1920's, please take a moment, today, to toast America's craft brewers.


Ingredients / Re: hop growing in the nv desert
« on: April 02, 2010, 01:47:33 AM »
I think you're gonna need some drip irrigation.  If you let 'em dry out, even for a day, they'll have big problems.  Mine seem to do fine when they have water, but my climate isn't quite as hot as yours.

hot oxy clean and bleach bath overnight almost always does the trick. pretty crazy watchin what happens to the oxy clean/water solution once u pour a little bleach in too  ;)

It may not be intuitive, but (hypochlorite) bleach and peroxide (the active in peroxygen bleaches like oxyclean) deactivate each other:
OCI- + H2O2 → CI- + H2O + O2

What you get is a release of oxygen gas & salt water if your ratio is "right".

The Pub / Re: Would you eat whale meat?
« on: April 01, 2010, 05:23:21 PM »
I could not imagine anything more delicious than magical whale bacon.    Mmmmmm...........whale bacon............

Doesn't bacon come from the axx?
Do whales have those?

I've always been afraid that the "rinse - aid" in the dishwasher would hurt foam retention.  Has that been a problem?

(I've never let is stop me from putting my other glassware in the dishmasher)

Ingredients / Re: Just can't find the best hop trellis design.
« on: March 31, 2010, 05:31:30 PM »
I like this one:, but it may not solve your problem of having too much lateral intermingling unless you space them a lot.

The Pub / Mosquitoes
« on: March 30, 2010, 06:08:49 PM »
This came from CEN March 15,2010:

"Finally, should you be inclined to down a pint on St. Patty's Day, try to avoid doing so in regions prone to malaria.  Opt for Ireland over a West African country such as Burkina Faso.  A recent study published in PLoS One finds that people who consume BEER are far more appealing to malaria-bearing mosquitoes than those who drink water (DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0009546).  The authors of the study believe that alcohol metabolism increases the breath and odor markers that attract mosquitoes.  Sláinte!"

Zymurgy / Re: Zymurgy Magazine?
« on: March 30, 2010, 05:27:52 PM »
Publishing Zymurgy's recipes in BeerXML and linking them from the website or forum (in both XML and rendered HTML) would be helpful in many ways, big and small.


Equipment and Software / Re: sanitation
« on: March 25, 2010, 08:49:57 PM »
...some fragrance and lotion free hand sanitizer

aka denatured ethanol.

Equipment and Software / Re: sanitation
« on: March 25, 2010, 01:54:58 PM »
I agree and that's what I do but once an item is rinsed in sanitizer can you just handle it.  Is rinsing my hand in sanitizer enough?

Anything you touch w/your hand isn't sanitized.  You need to hold what ever it is somewhere that isn't going to contact the beer.  So - any tubing has to be handled downstream from where it will touch the beer - the racking cane from the top - the bottles from the outside - the hydrometer from the very tip top etc.

I like your idea of gloves,  once they are sanitary they should be good until they come in contact w/something you touch.

I usually clean the keg w/PBW. Once you keg you almost never go back!

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